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Ask Amy: Non-vaxxed neighbor considers options

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: Occasionally, I get together with a few of my neighbors.

Recently these people have commented negatively about people not getting the COVID vaccine. I refuse to get this shot.

Should I admit my decision not to vaccinate — and tell them about it?

Should I just not be their friend anymore?

What is your advice?

– I Refuse

Dear ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Bipolar in California

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: I am a 56-year-old stepfather to two wonderful young women, ages 20 and 17. My wife of five years did a wonderful job raising the girls after their father died. Our relationship is open and trusting. I never call them stepdaughters. I view them as my own. And they tell me they love me.

My problem? Lately, the title of "stepfather" ...Read more

Fed Up With Husband's Family

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: My husband and I have been married for three years. Life together has been good since our relationship blossomed almost five years ago. But my in-laws have never supported our relationship because I'm not a member of the Latter-day Saints church, and because our relationship started while we were both separated but not divorced from ...Read more

Ask Amy: Writers are encouraged to proceed ‘Bird by Bird’

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: My darling partner, “B,” has been a successful author, and has received a lot of satisfaction (and public acclaim) from it.

During a lull, B took a job to make ends meet, and has been doing the 9-to-5 slog ever since.

Every few months, B will get an idea for a new book. B has an agent and the connections to get it published.

B ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Sick of the Farm

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: My husband's parents live on the farm where he grew up, which is about an hour away from my folks' house. When we go home to visit, I prefer to stay with my parents.

I have no problem visiting the farm and spending time with my husband's family, but the accommodations at my parents' house are more comfortable. We have an entire ...Read more

Single File: Reader's Choice

Life Advice / Single File /

For the curious, my life's work found me. Catapulted overnight (literally) into young widowhood, and with a very young son to nurture, I quickly realized how unprepared I was for life on my own. (Smith College doesn't educate to be Head of Household.) Every day was a challenge; some I met adequately, some not so well. But slowly and painfully, I...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Erika Ettin: Dating after divorce

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

It’s no secret that dating has its challenges. Add a divorce to the mix, and it can often feel even more difficult. Whether you’ve been divorced for a month or a year, it was amicable or hostile, you’re relieved or heartbroken, that first date back out there is a hurdle to get over. Do you mention it? Do you hide it? Do you talk about what...Read more

Chris Sweda / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS

Couples who rescheduled pandemic weddings now face new headache: Inflation

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

CHICAGO -- When Evan Cooperman and Rachel Ambrozewski got engaged in October 2019, in true Chicago style, the couple made no little plans: an elopement to a resort in Bali in June 2020, followed by a stateside wedding at the Michelin-starred, and now shuttered, Band of Bohemia.

But with the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, just ...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Barton Goldsmith: Talking to yourself is psychologically healthy

Life Advice / Dating Advice /

We have all heard that if you talk to yourself, you’re "crazy," but that’s not always the case. According to an article published by the American Psychological Association, talking to yourself in a positive way is actually very healthy for your psyche.

My first exposure to positive self-talk (PST) was reading "The Little Engine That Could."...Read more

Privacy in the Age of Home Cameras

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: I have a question about etiquette in our technological age.

I recently discovered that lots of people have cameras inside their own homes, and I found out that one couple with whom we are friendly has several cameras in their home. I discovered this accidentally, when one spouse was looking at their camera on their phone and their...Read more

Ask Amy: First pregnancy ups the ante with tough love

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: I have been estranged from my mother for a little over a year. She was mentally and occasionally physically abusive to me while I was growing up. She herself was abused and neglected as a child.

I have tried to repair our relationship, but she crosses any boundaries I set and places me in difficult situations to prove my love and ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Feeling Confused

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: Bob and I are both divorced from our previous spouses. His ex-wife was unfaithful, and so was my ex-husband. We fell in love even though we live miles apart. I recently visited him for the second time to talk about our future plans. He wanted me to meet his friends, and I happily agreed.

"Tina" is a longtime family friend. Bob is ...Read more

Science Advice Goddess: Backbone To The Future

I'm a man in my 60s. Looking back on my romantic life, I was always the guy women spent time with when their husband or boyfriend wasn't paying attention to them or while they waited for the right guy (status, power, money) to show up. I'm good-looking, but I realize from reading you that I never had enough "mate value," never mastering the ...Read more

More Tactful Replies

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Readers: I received so many letters about the column "Tactful Reply" that I wanted to honor your feedback and print some of them below. Thank you all for sharing your wonderful words of wisdom and advice on how to handle these situations. I'm hoping that it helps others know they are not alone in their grief.

Dear Annie: In response to ...Read more

Ask Amy: Rom-com might not have happy ending

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: They say you never forget your first love.

Is reaching out to them crossing a line?

Life for me was like a “rom-com” movie; I grew up as the girl next door in a gorgeous home. I was in love with the boy next door, “Brian.”

We had a pretend wedding when we were kids and always joked about being married to each other. His mom ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Wish He Knew When To Fold 'Em

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: My 85-year-old uncle, a widower, spends several days a week at casinos. This is no penny-ante stuff. He gambled away everything he ever owned and had to move into subsidized housing.

He is somewhat fatalistic at this point, figuring he won't live much longer and so he wants to have fun. While we recognize his right to spend his ...Read more

Seeking Support During Separation

Life Advice / Dear Annie /

Dear Annie: I have read your column for a long time now, and I always find that you give good advice and wisdom. I've been married for seven years and just recently became separated because my husband would rather be a playboy than a stable and reliable man.

I stood by this abusive and controlling man for years and lost all family and friends...Read more

Ask Amy: Blindsided wife wonders, ‘what’s next?’

Life Advice / Ask Amy /

Dear Amy: I recently returned from a week-long visit to help my 90-year-old father, whereupon my husband of 46 years sat me down and said he had contacted a lawyer to file for a divorce, rented an apartment, and wanted me to sell our brand-new home.

He has ALWAYS been a good, solid, loving partner up to this point.

I was completely blindsided ...Read more

Annie's Mailbox: Startling Tobacco Facts

Life Advice / Annie's Mailbox /

Dear Annie: The facts about tobacco use are startling. Every day, nearly 4,000 kids under the age of 18 try their first cigarette, and another 1,000 become regular smokers. To hook kids, tobacco companies spend billions of dollars each year targeting kids like me with advertising near schools and malls, and they even alter these deadly products ...Read more

Millennial Life: It's High Time for Compassionate Change

When my dad retired from the military, he did two things. First, he grew facial hair. Then, he put on weight. He was tall, so it was a slow gain, but his round face grew rounder, even apparent under the slightly unkempt beard and mustache.

The weight fell off when he fought lung cancer for three years, especially when the chemotherapy started. ...Read more